Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner responded to accusations by a former inspector general for the Troubled Asset Relief Program that the administration’s program devoted to the mortgage crisis was merely “foaming the runway” for Wall Street at the expense of the average American, saying he was “deeply offended” by those claims.
Treasury’s inspector general for the $700 billion TARP, Neil Barofsky, is out with a new book that maintains the financial bailout program’s funds were “hijacked by the interests of a small group of powerful Wall Street banks.” He blames Geithner, in particular, for the mishandling of the program.
“I find that deeply offensive,” Geithner told Charlie Rose in an interview that aired on Tuesday on CBS’s This Morning. He defended TARP: “We pulled the economy back from the abyss, stabilized the system, and got the economy growing again. Those things were absolutely necessary. There was no alternative.”
CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story incorrectly stated TARP’s final cost to taxpayers. It was $50 billion. The story also misspelled Neil Barofsky's name.